Characters are made after one of two fashions.
The first is creating an individual. The second is creating what amounts to a group of individuals. How these interact with eachother is guided by the Storyteller and players. For example, the Western Ocean could be considered a vast collection of water spirits. As such, they can make an 'attack', but not on anything much smaller than the western half of the Blessed Isle. Anything more targetted would be a tsunami or hurricane, which would be a collection of far fewer spirits.
Step 1: Determine Base
Determine the base individual involved. Whether with a city, army, ocean, or Solar, pick the average creature that is going to make up the character's base.
- First, choose a number of points to assign.
- 5 is for your typical, average mortal.
- 50 would be a focused, elite mortal.
- In theory, a mortal might be built on as many as 200 points.
- Most starting Exalted would be around 100 points.
- A veteren Dragon-Blooded would be around 250 points.
- A very experienced Celestial would be around 1,000 points.
- An Incarna or Primordial will have something on the league of 2,500 points
- The Shinma of Corruption / Entropy might 'only' have 10,000 points or so. The rest would be off the scale.
Step 2: Spend Points
Points are spent in a fairly straightforward manner. To determine the total cost of an elemental Trait, multiply dice rolled by the sides. So, a 5d4 Trait would cost 20 points. 1d40 would be 40 points, 1d1 1 point, and so on.
- Note, you cannot roll more dice than you have sides in a given Test. So, someone with 5d4 in a Trait would roll no better than 4d4.
Essence costs its rating squared, as does Versatility.
For those that have it, the Seventh Trait costs its rating cubed.
Mortals, in fact, most beings don't get to have an Essence or Versatility over 3.
Step 3: Apply Numbers
For every power of 5 within the group, at +1 to all dice rolled for Elemental Traits, and +1 to all die types, including Essence.
Depending on a class, if not enough numbers are present for a conflict, they will receive a penalty to dice rolled and die types instead, for fighting as an individual when they really ought not to be.
- Superior and Mystical Characters take a -1 penalty if there are less than 5 of them.
- Heroic and Mundane Characters take a -2 penalty if there are less than 5, and -1 if there are less than 100 (which equals out their bonus for being at least 5 of them).
- Extras take a -3 penalty, always. Their lot is not a good one.
Note that some types have special rules about how they combine. An Enlightened Mountain Folk directing several unEnlightened Mountain Folk will allow for vastly superior coordination, eliminating many of these penalties.
Step 4: Consider 'Equipment'
Certain cities may be exceptionally fortified, or a Solar team may just happen to posess the Five Metal Shrike. In such instances, they will receive bonus dice. Or if they are particularly ill-equipped, they might receive fewer dice than normal (though this will not lower a roll below Versatility).
Other factors which may cause similar situations are knowing 3rd-Circle spells or a Sidereal Martial Art. These abilities must be looked at individually and reasonably extrapolated.